Each shoe is designed around a last. This refers to the shape of the shoe and is essentially the mould that the shoe is constructed around. There are three shapes of lasts for different foot types (see the illustration above):
✔ CURVED This is designed for supinators with high, rigid arches.
SEMI-CURVED For neutral foot types.
✔ STRAIGHT Designed for flat, overpronating foot arches.
A medial post (or torsion) is normally found on the side of the shoe, controlling any movement that is excessive in nature, be it inward (pronation) or outward (supination). Look out for these shoe categories when shopping to get the most out of your run with the least impact:
CUSHIONED SHOES This is a shoe that has little medial or inner arch support but provides elevated cushioning for the midsole. Cushioned shoes are usually built on a curved or semi- curved last. This helps improve the foot motion of a foot that is too rigid.
✔ STABILITY SHOES These offer a blend of support, cushioning and durability. They include a post in the midsole which helps with stability, decreasing the extent of pronation, and are generally built on a semi- curved last. ✔ MOTION CONTROL SHOES These shoes are designed to slow the rate at which the runner overpronates by providing stiffer heels and medial posts.
It is heavier, and more rigid, but does tend to last longer than the cushioned and stability shoes.
These shoes are normally built on a straight last as this type of design offers better support and stability for the foot during running.